Inside the Dulux Academy (Part One)

Inside the Dulux Academy (Part One)



In this series, Professional Builder Online has teamed up with the Dulux Academy for a behind the scenes look at what training courses can offer an experienced professional. First up is a one-day Introduction to Spray Application course that runs regularly throughout the year.

Introduction to Spray Application 

Arriving for the one-day course, we are greeted by a member of the Dulux Academy team who leads us to the academy building. After a welcome coffee and a bacon roll, we are introduced to Tony, our trainer who will be leading the course. A painting contractor by trade, he has over 30 years experience in the decorating industry.

The morning session takes on a classroom style format to talk about the theory behind spray application and the equipment available. However, it’s a really relaxed environment and Tony’s passion for his industry is clear. Attendees are introduced to the most commonly used spray units, which helps everyone to gain a clear understanding of machine preparation and maintenance, as well as the accessories available.

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The importance of masking correctly is discussed before the group is taken through a number of techniques to create a high quality finish, including how to control the spray output for both High Volume Low Pressure (HVLP) and airless units. Essential health and safety issues are also highlighted to ensure attendees are aware of best practice before using the equipment in the practical session.

Changing into suitable workwear, including safety goggles and dust masks, the afternoon is focussed on providing hands-on experience with both HVLP and airless units provided by Graco and Q-Tech. This allows Dulux Academy attendees to benefit from learning with the most up to date products on the market.

With Tony demonstrating both correct and incorrect techniques to show the difference in finish, attendees are able to understand how to get the best output for each of the machines. It’s also made clear early on just how much time can be saved in certain scenarios by using a spray machine. Attendees are able to practice on a range of surfaces, including walls, doors and ceilings. 

What did the attendees think?

With over 30 years experience in the trade, Spencer Cummings, owner of Stylish Homes Painting & Decorating, enrolled on the course to add a spray offering to his business. Passionate about his trade, Spencer is still keen to learn and improve his skillset and is thankful for the facilities available at the Dulux Academy. Although his first course at the academy, Spencer has a longstanding relationship with Dulux Trade,


“It’s been fantastic. Having not used spray for over a decade, I really wanted to boost my confidence and feel comfortable when applying paint in this way,” explained Spencer. “The hands on experience with a selection of different equipment will really help me use this technique in the future, and being able to ask Tony questions throughout the course is invaluable.”


Highlighting that the Dulux Academy is accessible to painters and decorators at any stage of their career, John Clark registered with the academy thanks to a recommendation by his current employer. Having worked with Refresh Property Services for the last 12 months, John wants to progress his decorating career and is keen to take advantage of learning from the experienced trainers at the academy.


However, with a job already lined up to include spray application, John wasn’t sure if an introductory course would provide enough information for him to put it into practice. Thankfully that was not the case. “Spray is a key part of the future of the decorating industry and this course will allow me to use the technique onsite with confidence,” commented John. “I will definitely be looking to enroll on one of the Advanced Spray Application courses to further develop my skills in different real-life scenarios.”

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